Republicans have chosen the head sex-crime investigator for Maricopa County, Arizona, as the person who will handle the questioning of Judge Brett M. Kavanaugh and his accuser.
Sen. Charles E. Grassley, Iowa Republican and Senate Judiciary Committee chairman, announced in a statement Tuesday night that his panel had settled on Rachel Mitchell as the person to question the Supreme Court nominee and Christine Blasey Ford.
“The goal is to de-politicize the process and get to the truth, instead of grandstanding and giving senators an opportunity to launch their presidential campaigns. I’m very appreciative that Rachel Mitchell has stepped forward to serve in this important and serious role. Ms. Mitchell has been recognized in the legal community for her experience and objectivity,” Mr. Grassley said.
The panel’s statement went on to laud Ms. Mitchell as joining the committee staff while on leave “as Deputy County Attorney in the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office in Phoenix and the Division Chief of the Special Victims Division, which consists of sex-crimes and family-violence bureaus.”
The statement noted Ms. Mitchell as a 25-year prosecutor and 12-year specialist in sex-crime cases, which also included investigations of cold cases.
The Washington Post first reported the decision earlier Tuesday evening.
At the hearing, Ms. Blasey Ford is expected to detail her claim that the future Supreme Court nominee tried to force himself on her when they were teenagers.
Judge Kavanaugh has denied that charge and another claim of misconduct by a woman who, as of Tuesday evening, hadn’t agreed to testify.
All 11 Republicans on the panel are men, which prompted an outcry from Democrats and outside liberals about the appearances of a woman claiming sexual-assault being cross-examined by men.